Folks - if you don't listen to these, I would highly recommend it.... They cover broad topics, and tend to be not the usual marketeering schlock, but rather a frank dialog between technical folks who work with VMware every day.
Every Wednesday, at Noon PST....
Connect info is here.
Today, I'm on the roundtable. While they are unscripted and free flowing (who KNOWS where that goes - but that's part of the fun)
Topic that are on my mind below. If these are interesting, dial in.
- What VMware, EMC and Cisco are doing together trying to design the NGDC
- What's coming in vStorage
- What's brewing in the reference architectures labs for Tier 1 applications like Exchange, SQL Server, Sharepoint
- What we're working on next (i.e. taking SRM to the next level) around Disaster Recovery for VMware
- Storage Best Practices for VMware - what we're seeing work well.
- And most importantly... anything you want to ask me!!!
A couple "By the way" comments:
- A really good post on single initiator zoning on Yellow-Bricks... This has been in all the EMC VMware Academy training sessions we've been doing for more than a year. While we run our "best of the best" through VCP, everyone who is a pre-sales technical resource needs to do the VTSP and these "Academies" which compress the "Install and Configure" course into 2 days (with EMC-specific content on storage, backup and DR you don't get in the VCP training). Glad to see VMware saying the same thing. Soft vs hard zoning is subjective (i.e. up to your preferences, and debatable), but single initiator zoning is not. Do yourself a favor and don't create a single zone for all your ESX servers and VCB proxies.
- I've also been up to my eyeballs over the last few weeks (last week alone I worked with customers who in aggregate have more than 20K VMs deployed - wow), but have some free time today, so am hoping to push out a couple of blog updates (including some long awaited Celerra Sim 201 stuff) I've been working on for a while.
- Customers running VMware on NFS (on NetApp or Celerra) - make sure you read Scott's post on NFS.lock.disable (hint, leave it at the default of 0) here. Note that this isn't a NetApp technical issue per se, except for in the sense that they published their best practices with this incorrectly in the past). The same thing would occur on any NFS server (including the Celerra). Moral of the story to me?
- Locking isn't inherently a bad thing (it's often incorrectly bandied about as a core "VMFS issue" when people are FUD'ing VMFS scaling incorrectly). Locking (at the SCSI on block devices and file level for VMFS and NFS) is an intrinsic and important property of ESX - and critical for ensuring no split-brain condition occurs.
- It's very important for all of us to prioritize best practices around production use cases, not anciliary use cases. This may make me a bit of a fuddy-duddy, but I think it's the "right thing to do". While the VMware issue that caused ESX snapshots to be slow on NFS datastores was VMware's - not NetApp's (fix in ESX350-200808401-BG), I personally think it's a mistake to recommend a workaround that compromises availability (since on NFS **and** on VMFS - where the file locks are maintained in the VMFS metadata area - the file locks are an important governator on VM's being booted on multiple ESX servers). Again, people in glass houses shouldn't cast stones (i.e. we've made that mistake too in the past!) - but one of those things to consider as your vendors all bend over backwards to compete.